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I had just come into the house after working on clearing the land we have been plugging away at when I heard voices outside the window in our yard. I was dirty, sweaty, had thorns in most of the clothing I was wearing and honestly not in the mood to have visitors. I walked out to the kitchen, looked out the window to see this random guy and his 3-year-old son sitting down on our chairs in the yard. Somewhat baffled (and annoyed) I stood there watching, wondering why this person took it upon himself to walk down the driveway around the back of the house and play with his kid in our yard. It was very strange, to say the least. After a while, I walked out front and said “can I help you? Are you looking for someone from the church?” To which he replied “I’m not resisting! I have the right to remain silent!” I responded “excuse me, sir? I’m just trying to understand why you are hanging out in our yard.” He asked if they were not welcome. “ I didn’t say that. It’s just that we live here… Can I get you and your son some water?”

This lead to a beautiful conversation. We sat down and talked for an hour and a half. He was extremely aggressive with his son. Yelling at him for everything. I asked, “when was the last time you hugged him and told him you love him?” He replied, “He’s only 3 he doesn’t understand that stuff yet.” I went on to explain how important it was to show love to our children whenever possible, and that they understand and receive love as soon as they are born. He appeared to be confused about this. I went on to explain that we tend to project our understanding of what a father is on to the Lord and that the more hugs our kids get the easier it will be for them to receive hugs from their Father in heaven. He was honestly surprised that children wanted and needed to receive love and affirmation like that. In that instant he turned to his little boy and said “come here buddy, daddy loves you” and gave him a hug. The little boy responded “You do? and mommy too? She loves me?” “Yes she does pal,” he said. His 3-year-old son smiled ear to ear like it was the first time he felt a love like that. It was so Beautiful.

Remember earlier I said I was not in ministry mood? I was dirty, irritable and ready for a shower! When you carry the presence of the living God, people are drawn to you (and your property). When the Spirit that rests on your home screams freedom, love and redemption people will continuously be drawn to wherever you are, even when you are dirty and not in the mood!

Alisan and I have been struggling with getting out on the streets at the same consistency as we did in Brasil. The day before this encounter I was feeling really down about that. During my conversation with the young man that wandered into our yard, he told me that he and his son live across the street from “needle park” in Kensington. This is an area that the Lord had placed on my heart when we were called back to Philly but we haven’t been able to begin ministry there yet. After we were done talking and I walked them out to the street I felt the Lord say “ you may not be set up Kensington yet but I can bring Kensington to you!”

By: Luke Billman

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